The Best Artificial Grass of 2023 - Top Picks from Bob Vila

By Timothy Dale | Updated May 12, 2023 12:04 PM

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The Best Artificial Grass of 2023 - Top Picks from Bob Vila

Tired of the grind of mowing and watering the yard? Got a shady spot where you cannot get grass to grow? Maybe it’s time to replace your real grass with artificial grass. As a synthetic replacement, it requires less maintenance and stays green.

The best artificial grass lets you enjoy most of the benefits of a lush lawn, including appearance. The right turf for you depends on where you want to install it, how you want it to look, who will use the fake grass (like pets), and the amount of foot traffic.

Explore the quality picks below and keep reading for tips on finding the right fake turf for your outdoor space.

Extensive research into each product, including a thorough examination of the durability, style, color, texture, backing, and overall construction, was necessary to select the top artificial grass products. Durability was one of the most important factors because artificial turf is regularly subjected to human and animal foot traffic, which can quickly destroy substandard artificial grass.

Additionally, the appearance and texture of the realistic artificial grass were key components in the selection process because most users are looking for an artificial product that closely mimics natural grass. The material and style of the artificial grass turf were considered for both the appearance and durability of the product, while the pile height and product material also were necessary for determining foot traffic suitability. Artificial grass products that had built-in drainage holes or a multilayered backing to improve durability were typically considered superior to similar products that lacked these features.

We evaluated some top-performing artificial grasses, measured them against our buying considerations below, and picked favorites for putting in greens, backyards, and gardens.

The Petgrow artificial grass rug can stand up to moderate foot traffic and has a water-resistant backing, making it a good choice for a wide range of locations. This polypropylene artificial lawn will work in gardens, backyards, and front yards. With built-in drainage holes and water-resistant rubber backing, this grass can handle pet urine.

This artificial grass turf has a pile of 1.38 inches, with a random pattern of blade shapes and four natural tones for a realistic look. Petgrow is both a heat- and fade-resistant product, with a multilayer backing for superior durability.

Get the Petgrow PG1-4 artificial grass at Amazon.

Petgrow’s artificial turf packs a lot of features into a thrifty price. It’s made of polypropylene and has 1.38-inch blades that look realistic and can stand up to moderate foot traffic. It feels soft and blends four green tones into the yarn for a realistic turfgrass appearance.

The artificial turf has drainage holes and a rubber backing that makes it easy to clean and durable for long-lasting use. Those holes are pet-friendly as well because they drain away urine.

Get the Petgrow Deluxe artificial grass at Amazon.

While many users can appreciate the look and feel of artificial grass, the goal for most manufacturers is to create a product that closely resembles the appearance and texture of natural grass. This product by Goasis Lawn uses a blend of green color hues and soft, polyethylene fibers to mimic real grass and allow users to install this impressive alternative without a shocking difference in the look and feel of the yard.

The fake grass turf comes in a wide range of sizes and has a pile height of 1.38 inches, which is a good height for moderate foot traffic, like kids and pets playing in the yard. This product has a thick, durable polypropylene backing that helps to improve the durability of the grass without diminishing its appearance. Additionally, this UV-resistant artificial grass has a fake thatch woven into the design to mimic the authenticity of turf fibers.

Get the Goasis artificial grass at Amazon.

SunVilla is our pick for covering the places between the beds of flowers, shrubs, and veggies because it doesn’t need any infill to stand up to foot traffic. Users can spend their energy and time tending the garden instead of the high-quality artificial grass. It’s made of polyethylene and polypropylene yarn with a tough polypropylene backing, with a pile of 1.38 inches.

Users can walk all around their garden beds working, watering, and weeding them, and SunVilla artificial grass can take it. Its fake grass blades are made in four colors of yarn to give the artificial lawn a realistic look because blades that are all one color look fake. It’s made of nontoxic, lead-free materials, so harmful chemicals won’t leach into the garden. It’s UV resistant, too.

Get the SunVilla artificial grass at Amazon.

Lita’s artificial grass balances good looks with durability, making it a good pick for backyards where there will be lots of activity. Its blades are made of soft, durable polyethylene and polypropylene yarn that looks and feels like real grass. Four color tones mimic the shades of natural turf.

Built-in UV resistance keeps this artificial turf colorfast for years, while a polypropylene backing and 1.375-inch pile make it durable to foot traffic. This fake grass has a perforated backing to allow fast drainage, so it dries out quickly after rain. The manufacturer recommends adding infill (sold separately) to extend the life of the product.

Get the Lita artificial grass at Amazon.

If you have kids who spend fall days playing pickup games of football in the yard or you just want to add super-durable artificial grass to your landscape, this artificial grass is a good option. It has a pile of 1.6 inches woven through a polyurethane backing with drainage holes to prevent standing water and make cleaning easier.

This artificial grass uses slight variations of color, dimension, and texture to make the blades look more realistic. It even has imitation thatch at the base of the blades so it looks as imperfect as a real lawn. It’s made to stand up to the twists, turns, and jumps that come with football and other high-energy activities.

Get the Artificial Grass Wholesalers artificial grass at Amazon.

This artificial turf rug provides a soft, safe surface for kids to play on. It’s made of medium-density polypropylene that resists stains and UV damage. The rug has 1-inch-long blades that are soft under the feet but not so thick that kids can’t get a sure footing.

iCustomRug synthetic turf has perforations in its backing to allow rain and hose water to drain away, taking dirt and grime with it, while the binding tape on the edges keeps the artificial grass from unraveling over time. Just keep in mind that some of the fake grass strands can come loose and become a choking hazard to young children, so it’s important to keep an eye on the kids when they play on this fake grass.

Get the iCustomRug artificial grass at Amazon.

If you find yourself living in the city but missing the feel and look of a yard, cover your balcony floor in artificial turf. This Petgrow synthetic turf has a low 0.4-inch pile that can stand up to regular foot traffic for adding a patch of green in a small urban setting.

The fake turf has medium-density polypropylene grass blades and drainage holes that let rainwater drain away so no mold grows. The artificial grass has a rubber backing that can lie directly on the concrete floor of the balcony, so it’s easy to install.

Get the Petgrow Synthetic artificial grass at Amazon.

Ensure that you find the most realistic artificial grass for your yard, patio, or personal putting greens by taking the time to learn more about the various factors that can influence the appearance and durability of synthetic turf products. Fake grass comes in several different types with varying pile heights. Some synthetic grass can even be made with treated turf fibers to help stand up to direct sunlight or the wear and tear typically associated with sports turf.

There are three general types of artificial grass, each based on the type of yarn that goes into making them: nylon, polyethylene, or polypropylene. The amount and frequency of human use on synthetic turf is known as foot traffic. When choosing artificial grass options, consider how many footsteps the fake grass will face every day. If your yard will have a high volume of foot traffic—say, lots of kids and dogs romping daily—you need to pick a material that can stand up to wear.

The pile height of fake grass refers to the length of the grass blades, typically measured in inches or millimeters. The longer the pile height, the more durable the synthetic turf will be. Professional athletic fields have artificial grass with a pile height of up to 3 inches so that it can withstand wear and tear.

High-traffic areas like playgrounds or amateur athletic fields need a pile height of 1.5 inches to 2 inches. Medium-traffic areas like your backyard need a pile height of 1 inch to 1.5 inches. For low-traffic locations like an apartment balcony, 0.5 inch to 1 inch of pile height is suitable.

Once you install artificial grass, one of the good things about it is how easy it is to maintain. There’s no watering or fertilizing with artificial grass, nor is there any need for pesticides or fertilizer. To maintain artificial grass, be sure to rake up twigs, leaves, and other yard debris, and hose it down periodically to keep it clean and smelling fresh (especially if you have pets).

Some high-quality artificial grasses have built-in resistance to the sun’s damaging rays, called ultraviolet (UV) protection. UV protection keeps artificial grass from fading in the sun and prevents its backing from breaking down and allowing grass turn fibers to come out. If you live in an area with intense sun exposure, you may want artificial grass with built-in UV resistance to make it last longer.

Infill is sand or sandlike material placed on top of the artificial grass to hold up the blades, weigh down the turf, and mimic the absorption quality of the soil. It helps an artificial lawn feel and look more realistic. It’s not included with all artificial grass products, but adding it protects your synthetic turf from heavy foot traffic and UV damage.

Additionally, artificial grass typically comes in a range of green hues. Most artificial grass products use a blend of hues to produce a more realistic appearance. High-quality artificial grass has blades with soft edges and firm tips that don’t look fake. Some artificial grasses even have a thatch layer that helps make a yard look less perfect and more realistic.

Dog and other animals’ urine may damage live grass, but it drains through the backing of artificial grass, leaving the surface undamaged. When selecting the ideal artificial grass, ensure that its construction includes drainage holes to allow for pet urine, rainfall, or any other water to flow out to prevent smells and mold.

You can, but you shouldn’t. Doing so can cause long-term problems like grass or weeds growing through the artificial grass backing as well as poor drainage that can shorten the lifespan of your artificial grass. Plus, applying artificial grass to real turf may cause untold browning to the grass underneath, and the turf might never regain its full luster.

The thickness or pile height depends on the preference of the user. Choose taller pile heights for high-traffic areas, like sport fields, to cushion the impact on the ground. Go with a short pile height for low-traffic landscape lawns or balconies that are rarely used. In general, artificial grass should have a pile height between 0.5 and 1 inch for low-traffic areas, 1 and 1.5 inches for moderate-traffic areas, and 1.5 and 2 inches for high-traffic areas.

Silica sand is one of the best options to put under artificial grass, but you can also use crushed granite, gravel, and limestone chippings. Just make sure that you do not lay the artificial grass directly on soil as this can lead to weeds, natural grass, and other plants growing up through the turf.

Artificial grass takes less work to maintain than a live lawn, but it’s not maintenance-free like some other lawn alternatives. To keep it looking great and prolong its lifespan, follow these maintenance tips:

On average, artificial grass lasts 15 to 20 years. The amount of maintenance and traffic volume affects the lifespan of artificial grass. If your artificial grass is being used frequently, you may begin to see fibers coming out of the turf or uneven areas that are difficult to fix once tarnished.

Bob Vila has been America’s Handyman since 1979. As the host of beloved and groundbreaking TV series including “This Old House” and “Bob Vila’s Home Again,” he popularized and became synonymous with “do-it-yourself” home improvement.

Over the course of his decades-long career, Bob Vila has helped millions of people build, renovate, repair, and live better each day—a tradition that continues today with expert yet accessible home advice. The Bob Vila team distills need-to-know information into project tutorials, maintenance guides, tool 101s, and more. These home and garden experts then thoroughly research, vet, and recommend products that support homeowners, renters, DIYers, and professionals in their to-do lists.

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The Best Artificial Grass of 2023 - Top Picks from Bob Vila

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